Spring officially started just a few days ago, but don't pack that snow shovel up just yet. A new storm developing off the southeastern coast is expected to intensify as it slides north early this week. What does that mean for places like the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast? That all depends on how closely it hugs the coastline.
The models are still showing two different possible tracks and two potential outcomes.
The European model is forecasting the storm to be stronger and to track closer to the northeastern coastline. This will lead to higher snowfall for interior portions of the Northeast, higher rainfall for big coastal cities, and stronger winds. Interior portions of the Northeast could get 6 to 12 inches of spring snow. Coastal regions could see 1 to 3 inches of rain which could lead to flooding.
The American model is showing a weaker storm that is further off the coast, this will lead to less snow, rain, and weaker winds across the Northeast through Tuesday. The only areas that see snow in this scenario are higher elevations of the Green, White, and Adirondack mountains.
The European model brings the storm closer to the 'Benchmark,' but the American model takes it well east of that. The Benchmark is a locator term referring to latitude and longitude of 40 degrees North and 70 degrees West.
Meteorologists use this to determine how much snow the storm will produce and where. Too far west of that mark and the Northeast generally gets mostly rain with a bit of snow mixed in. Too far east and the system is too far away from the coast to bring enough moisture that causes heavy rain and snow to the region.
While this is a fast moving system, and should be through by Tuesday for most places, there is another round of potential snow Wednesday for many across the same areas.